Black Knight (2001) / Comedy-Fantasy
MPAA Rated: PG-13 for language, sexual/crude humor and battle violence
Running Time: 95 min.
Cast: Martin Lawrence, Tom Wilkinson, Marsha Thomason, Vincent Regan
Director: Gil Junger
Screenplay: Darryl J. Quarles, Peter Gaulke, Gerry Swallow
Review published May 21, 2002
Once the rest of the world's movie-going public realizes that Martin Lawrence (Big Momma's House, Blue Streak) isn't funny and stops flocking to his movies, I can breathe a lot easier as a movie reviewer. Black Knight is one of an already impressive line of unfunny Martin Lawrence comedies and ranks among his very worst efforts. I refuse to believe they went into this film with anything remotely resembling an actual script, as the majority of the film consists of nothing more than Lawrence mugging and jiving in an effort to conjure up chuckles. The result frequently transcends excruciating.
Let's examine the plot, which isn't much. Jamal, played by Martin, is an employee of an amusement park called Medieval World. He gets a nasty conk in the head and falls into the faux moat only to arise in Medieval England during the 14th Century. Of course, Martin still thinks he is in the amusement park, and the Medieval people think him a wacky foreigner to their lands.
Here we have a film that someone could have written in a small part of a lazy afternoon. Someone, somewhere, must have thought, "Hey, Martin Lawrence is pretty damned funny. In fact, he is funny just making faces and reacting to things in hilarious ways, and miraculously has made a whole career out of this. How about we have Martin go back in time, make funny faces and react to things. Now there is a movie!!"
How funny you find this movie will rest solely on how funny you think Martin Lawrence actually is. Imagine the look on Martin Lawrence's face when leering at a hot babe. Now imagine Martin Lawrence's face while smelling a fart. Lastly, imagine Martin Lawrence's reaction when taking a crap. Imagine him doing all three for ninety minutes in sequence repeatedly. Sound funny to you? If so, Black Knight was made just for people like you, go see it immediately. Everyone else will just be hoping to see Martin Lawrence's face after the drop of the executioner's axe.
I only wish Martin Lawrence could go back to Medieval times in reality. I, for one, would find the result immensely pleasurable. Oh, if only he were alive during a time when he could make no movies...
©2001 Vince Leo